Teaching in the 36K Computer Lab, part 1

I was at 36K for a total of nine days (eight days at the main site where I actually taught in the computer lab). This series of blog posts will describe the actual way I taught each class. I taught 34 classes in total over the eight days.

This is not the only way to teach in a computer lab, obviously. My focus was on robotics and coding. Other teachers focus on using PowerPoint or good digital citizenship.

Part 1, Introducing myself to students.

  • I met the students outside in the hallway, as they lined up against the wall adjacent to my room
  • I informed them that they would be sitting around the table in the center of the room; additional students would sit around the perimeter tables, chairs facing outward
  • Kids entered the room, some jostling for seats, but not bad..Asked the para for optimal placements
  • I introduced myself and showed my ID card. The fun thing about my ID card is that it is on a retractable wire, so it pulls down and back up again. I challenge the kids to catch it if they have fast hands. Some kids were “too cool” to play the game, but most tried to catch the card.

To be continued…

Proud Pencilcoder

A student tinkered with an existing pencilcode.net algorithm and made this cool spiral design. He made me take two photos of his screen, so I could get the last few lines of code at the bottom!



Thursday in the Lab

Five classes: some standard, some alt.

We did pencilcode.net, tinkercad.com, code.org, and chrome music lab’s Song Maker app. Everyone was on task and on target. 🙂


Pencilcode is so Good

The introduction of pencilcode.net to students who had finished taking a test. We tinkered with existing code and made a beautiful spirograph-style pattern.

Paper Commands

This class of five students familiarized themselves with arrow commands: move forward, turn left, and turn right. They are made of paper, though I really should laminate them.

This was used to introduce the beebot emulator website, which also uses arrows to command the beebot. But first, I modeled the beebot using Notebook software.

The students took turns using my bluetooth touch pad to command the beebot.

The Foos

This class of students worked together on the smartboard to solve the Foos puzzles.

We all got stuck on one, and even the paras gave it a try. We had to make use of the Repeat block and we could not figure it out.

To be continued next week!

BeeBots Online

Second time I am seeing the class this week. First time I pretended to be a robot and they programmed me to get to the lightswitch in the doorway…move forward x number of steps, turn left, turn right.

This time i had paper cutouts of robots and paper arrows for forward, turn left, turn right.

After showing the papers, i asked the kids if they had seen the website. They all said NO. So we went to the website on the smart board.

(FYI ..I was using a bluetooth touchpad to control the smartboard, to Wow effect from the students. They all wanted a try)

We went to beebot emulator website (beebot.terrapinlogo.com) on the smartboard. I demonstrated how it works. I showed a couple of moves using the blank card mat, then had two students come up to command the beebot using the alphabet mat.

Then they all went to the computers to do their own explorations and programming.

One student came up to code the beebot travelling to the girl’s room on the school mat.

After the Test

Students had to take an online ELA test in the computer lab.

After the test, they relaxed with defly.io, 1v1.lol, coolmathgames.com, and typingclub.com.

Week at a Glance

The schedule for the week

First Day Schedule, Deployment October 2021

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November 2021